Monitoring Environmental Pollutants with EPR

Pollution is a major toxic environmental hazard affecting people health, and participating in processes resulting in the formation of free radicals.

Pollution is a major environmental hazard that affects the health of people worldwide. All pollutants are toxic in their own right and often participate in processes resulting in the formation of free radicals. Monitoring free radicals and other pollutants with unpaired electrons (such as transition metals) in the environment is of critical importance and can be detected with Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) spectroscopy allowing their measurement and monitoring their distribution as well as aiding in clean-up strategies.

EPR is the only analytical technique capable of detecting species with unpaired electrons, in a direct and non-invasive manner. It can be used to detect, quantify and monitor the intrinsic generation of short-lived radicals, such as hydroxyl radicals, as well as environmentally persistent free radicals (EPFRs). EPR is therefore extremely useful for tracking free radicals in the environment, in addition to detecting toxic metal ions in the air, groundwater and soil, and monitoring their uptake by plants. By furthering this knowledge, researchers can also increase their understanding of the behavior of free radicals in the body and their impacts on human disease.

What You Will Learn

The speakers will introduce Bruker’s EMXnano bench-top EPR spectrometer package, which features the following capabilities:

  • Detects and identifies environmentally persistent free radicals (EPFRs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) radicals, reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS and RNS), and transition metals involved in the pollution chemistry 
  • Determines the oxidative potential of ambient particulate matter which is an important metric to estimate potential adverse effects
  • Reaction monitoring
  • Quantifies free radical concentration using the SpinCount tool

Who Should Attend?

  • General managers involved in quality control of the environment, waste management, and environmental agencies
  • Academics who do environmental research or collaborate with environmental agencies
  • Researchers who study the impact of environmental pollution on human health


Dr. Kalina Ranguelova

Senior EPR Applications Scientist, Bruker BioSpin

Dr. Kalina Ranguelova is an EPR Applications Scientist in Bruker BioSpin Corporation since 2011. She completed her Ph.D. at The Bulgarian Academy of Sciences where she received a Ph.D. with research focused on inorganic copper complexes structure using electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. After two research positions at CUNY and National Institute for Environmental Sciences where she studied free radical biology and EPR spin trapping as method for measurement of reactive oxygen species (ROS), she joined Bruker and holds a role as Applications Scientist. Her current focus is detection and identification of free radicals in biological systems and pharmaceuticals using spin traps and spin probes. She has publications in journals like Journal of Biological Chemistry, Biochemistry, Free radical Biology and Medicine, etc. She has presented in many international meetings related to free radical research in biology and protein chemistry.

Dr. Ralph Weber

Senior EPR Applications Scientist, Bruker BioSpin

Dr. Ralph Weber started his scientific training at Brown University where he received a B.A in Chemistry and German Literature and Language. He continued his training at the University of Chicago, earning a Ph.D. in chemistry focusing on EPR and ENDOR studies of proteins and lanthanide complexes. Two postdoctoral positions followed. At Leiden University in the Netherlands he studied excited states of molecules using ODMR (Optically Detected Magnetic Resonance) and designed and constructed a high frequency pulse EPR spectrometer. At MIT he studied motional dynamics in lipids via solid state NMR and was one of the original project members to design and construct a DNP (Dynamic Nuclear Polarization) spectrometer incorporating a high power gyrotron. He joined Bruker 29 years ago in 1989. He is responsible for much of the documentation for EPR and also offers customer support for pulse, high frequency, and imaging applications. He is currently co-principal investigator on a five-year NIH grant to develop pre-clinical EPR imaging technology and to promote its use in the pharmaceutical industry.